Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music


June 1, 2006


Album Name: The Free of CHARGE Demo.

Best Element: Creativity

Genre: Progressive Rock/Metal


Label: N/A

Band E-mail:

From the opening notes of “Where is my Crossbow?” I quickly realized that I was going to be in for a treat. Storm the Castle is an eclectic Arkansas-based band fusing Metal riffs with rock-style vocals and added progressive elements, overall leaving a truly refreshing taste on your aural palette.

The comical, Viking-based imagery that is associated with their album and website is as discerning as it is entertaining and comical, especially since these cats certainly aren’t Viking or Black Metal. I have to admire a band that can produce good quality music and still have a keen sense of humor about what they are doing. Just a glimpse at their song names is sure to make one chuckle with their witty titles…

More importantly, their musical abilities should be taken 100% seriously, blending highly melodic guitar work with a strong, vibrant, rhythm section. Just listen to the instrumental breakdown in “Lost in the Goddamazon”, for this is a clear testament to their musical ability, showcasing their ability to transcend musical borders with nice start/stop rhythms and unique time signatures. The vocals did take me a while a to warm up to, but in all honesty it is what sets their sound apart from many other metal/hardcore bands (Well, that and their fantastic song writing… but we’ll address that in a moment). Thankfully, the vocalist is not doing self-indulgent, generic, emo/screamo or attempting to produce a mere guttural growl.

As I was saying above, fantastic songwriting! And these guys have it. You won’t find the generic chug-chug breakdowns or trendy power-pop choruses here…STC are able to avoid the typical clichés of much modern heavy music. Each song is a wealth of skillful song writing and musical ability, as there is no filler on this 5 song EP. Even the instrumental track, “Victory, but at what cost?” is a well-composed score of European-inspired guitar harmonies.

Above all else, STC has done what many other bands are scared to do: make music for themselves first, and let the masses cast their judgment later. As a reviewer and a musician I can not only appreciate this, but also truly enjoy their music. A band this unique can only come from a strong vision. Hopefully they can keep their focus in the future. These guys have tons of potential and I cannot wait to see what their future holds.


Josh Hogan

Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of instrumental music. We write about those trying to make the next step in their careers and established artists.

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